I'm New To Modding Please Help Me! -1 reply

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Unreal_General

Paintball Fury Creator

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14th July 2003

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#1 15 years ago

I wanna know how to make mods and I would like any help or suggestions or pointers on modding. PLEASE answer! The last time I asked someone all they said was that

you just make modifications to all the notepad files(.INI)

, and thats all he said.:rock: thanks




battatta

Retired modder

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#2 15 years ago

I figured someone might as well write a tutorial on adding units, since I had enough trouble figuring it out on my own. The first thing you're going to need is a .BIG file unpacker. There are lots to choose from, if you know where to look (I personally have been using Xentax). Once you have that, extract the .INI files to your generals directory. The one that we're going to look at to start with is FactionUnits.ini (This should be in your GeneralsDataINIObject directory).

In case you don't know (And yes, you are a n00b if you don't), you can open a .INI file with Notepad or Wordpad or any other basic text editor. The first thing you'll see is a comment from the programmers regarding the nature of this file. Read it. Anything with a semi-colon (One of these -> ; ) before it is a comment. Comments are not run in-game as code, they're there for the sole purpose of documentation.

Okay, now, the first OBJECT you'll see, is AmericaParachute. I doubt you're really interested in editing this, so let's skip to something you can edit and see immediate results (assuming you haven't changed your start map file). Use your text editor's search function to find AmericaVehicleHumvee. Note the naming convention. All units in C&C Generals follow this. For instance, there's ChinaTankBattlemaster, GLAInfantryRebel, AmericaVehicleComanche, etc.

All objects have several attributes you can modify. Let's look at the one that will let you see a change visually (Hopefully you've found AmericaVehicleHumvee by now); the MODEL attribute. You'll find this under the CONDITIONSTATE of NONE. In other words, this is what the Humvee will look like when nothing special has happened to it (like damage, or upgrades). Okay, change AVHUMMER in the model field to.. hmm.. CVPoliceCar. Assuming your file is in the correct place, you can now start up Generals and look at the opening scene in the main screen.

Ooh. Ah. You've changed the model of the Hummer. Feel special? Good.

Before we move on, a side note: A list of all models can be found in W3D.BIG. The naming convention is as follows (We'll refer to AVHUMMER):

A for America V for Vehicle HUMMER is the name of the object.

In other words, the first two letters are the faction and unit type, the last blog of text is the model's name.

Moving on!

Okay, so you think you're real special, eh? You've modified the model for the Humvee. Now you want more. Understandable, let's start a new unit. Vehicles are the simplest, in my opinion, to implement, so let's copy the good 'ol Humvee (everything from the header down to the part before the line that seperates it from the next object) and paste it at the bottom of the file so you can find it easy.

First things first, let's change the name. Call it whatever you want, I'll call mine AmericaVehicleCopCar (Not real original, but it's simple). You can change the portraits and such, if you want, but I'm just going to skip to my first main point: the weapon. Scroll down to the section titled ***DESIGN parameters *** and find WeaponSet. Note that there are actually two weaponsets, one for before you upgrade to TOW Missiles, and one for after the upgrade. For now, just edit the first one. Set WEAPON = PRIMARY HumveeGun to WEAPON = PRIMARY BuggyRocketWeapon

Next, let's change how it moves. Locomotors control every aspect of unit movement in Generals. Scroll down to *** ENGINEERING Parameters ***. Find where it says Locomotor = SET_NORMAL HumveeLocomotor. Okay, now change that to Locomotor = SET_NORMAL TechnicalLocomotor

What we currently have, assuming you've followed along, is a unit that looks like a cop car (if you didn't change the humvee back to it's default model), fires GLA Rocket Buggy missiles, and moves like a GLA Technical (Moves fast, catches some decent air on good-sized bumps). I know what you're thinking: "Okay, so I've made a unit, now how do I get it in the game?" Just hold on a second and I'll tell you.

Go back to your .BIG extractor and pull out CommandButton.INI and CommandSet.INI. Open up CommandButton, for starters, because now we're going to make a new button to build your unit. Search for ConstructAmericaVehicleHumvee. This is obviouslly the button that builds Humvees. It's exactly what you see in the USA's War Factory. Copy the whole thing and paste it right below the original.

First things first, change the name. I called mine ConstructAmericaVehicleCopCar. You can call yours whatever you want, but I strongly suggest following naming convention for easy searching later. The Command = field tells the game what it wants the button to do. In this case, it's building a unit. Leave that alone. The Object = field tells it what it's building. Change this to the name of your unit (In my case, AmericaVehicleCopCar). The TextLabel is the name in the tooltip that pops up when you highlight it ("But wait, I don't have a tooltip yet..." Hold that thought). Change this to CONTROLBAR:ConstructAmericaVehicleCopCar or whatever your unit's name is tacked onto the end. We'll come back to tooltips later. For the button image, you can make it something different, or just leave it alone. The next entry, like the comment says, just tells the user what the button does. Don't bother messing with it unless you like confusing people. Finally, the DescriptLabel is the second half of the tooltip. Once again, modify it to fit the name of your unit. We'll come back to this too.

Fingers cramping yet? Mine are. Anyway... Next, open up CommandSet.INI, we need to tell the War Factory to use this button. First, refer to the comment at the top to understand the button layout, then search for AmericaWarFactoryCommandSet. This is the list of buttons that the US War Factory uses. Note that buttons 6-8 are not in use, and #9 is commented out (apparently a feature of the Multiplayer Test that was removed). You can use any of these button slots (even 9) to put in your button. I suggest you just copy the line of text for slot 5 and change it to reflect your button's name. That was easy, eh?

Okay, time to finish this unit off. Now you're going to need a .CSF editor. Many C&C sites have them available for download. .CSF files are what Generals uses to store it's tooltips and other text blogs. Once you have an editor, open up ENGLISH.BIG and extract generals.CSF. This should go in your GeneralsDataEnglish directory. Open the file with your CSF editor. Find the CONTROLBAR section and look up a tooltip similar to yours. Copy the name, insert a new string, and change the name to reflect the appropriate tooltip entry. (NOTE: There ARE one or two tooltips on the unit itself, you may want to go back and change these too) Make them say whatever you want. You can tell them the button will give them a million dollars if they click it, if that's what you really want. I suggest you use an existing tooltip as a template, though.

Okay, that done? Everything saved? You're now ready to test your unit. Load up Generals and skirmish against a computer as USA. Note the new button on your War Factory. Build your new whatever it is that you called it. Attack the enemy with it, if you want to see the rockets.

Woo, you've made your own unit. Now go make more! Or, change more of the details about your unit. No, I do not intend to go into more detail on this subject, so you're on your own now. Experiment! That's what modding is all about. Don't be afraid to change a value, even if you don't think it'll work. Most of all, have fun, but try to remember that sleep and food are required for survival.




Unreal_General

Paintball Fury Creator

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14th July 2003

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#3 15 years ago

Thanks Battatta, I've played your mod and it's really good. I've scanned your reply and the last sentence

remember that sleep and food are important

yeah well, I think its gonna take a long time just reading the whole thing you wrote.:D :rock: :sleep:




Unreal_General

Paintball Fury Creator

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#4 15 years ago

i tried to do what you said, Battatta, with the Humvee changing into a police car but its not working. I dont have that .BIG thing you said you have to use so i think that might be it. and where can i download that .BIG extractor you said you have to you.




battatta

Retired modder

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#5 15 years ago

Use FinalBIG instead...you can grab it here




Unreal_General

Paintball Fury Creator

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#6 15 years ago

still not working... i dont get how to use Final Big. Either I'm not extracting them the right way(or writing them the right way) or you left something for what you need to do out.:( If you have how to use Final Big PLEASE send it to me, because i really wanna start making mods cause then i'll learn how to understand games a little more and the games im gonna make once i finish learning Maya and [COLOR=red]C++[/COLOR].




FROSTY[SoW]

Slightly cooler than a n00b

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14th December 2002

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#7 15 years ago
Okay, time to finish this unit off. Now you're going to need a .CSF editor. Many C&C sites have them available for download. .CSF files are what Generals uses to store it's tooltips and other text blogs. Once you have an editor, open up ENGLISH.BIG and extract generals.CSF. This should go in your GeneralsDataEnglish directory. Open the file with your CSF editor. Find the CONTROLBAR section and look up a tooltip similar to yours. Copy the name, insert a new string, and change the name to reflect the appropriate tooltip entry. (NOTE: There ARE one or two tooltips on the unit itself, you may want to go back and change these too) Make them say whatever you want. You can tell them the button will give them a million dollars if they click it, if that's what you really want. I suggest you use an existing tooltip as a template, though.

Can you explain this part a bit more clearly PLZ

THX




battatta

Retired modder

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#8 15 years ago

Hummm, let's see:

1st things 1st here's the editor, grab it here:




battatta

Retired modder

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#9 15 years ago

Now you have the tool, let's find the targeting file. As mentioned above, is ...generals/data/ini/english/generals.csf This is Cascade Style Format file, i.e. a main model (framework) that furnish pieces of information for several window displays in the game, As when you point your mouse over a cammeo in order to click and beggin constructing an unit, soon a black box appears says all about that unit and so on, I'm sure you guys know what I'm talking about.

Going further... the CSF Editor is a pretty simple program to use, it will list the entries or keys at the left and when you click over one of them, the respective value (text) appears in the right.

There are 3 main entries (keys) that you must provide text values for each new unit you place (this entries are the same you must edit in CommandButton.ini): See my (famous now - EA will use it in GenX expansion pack !!! ) Spectre Gunship unit as example:

CommandButton Command_ConstructAmericaJetSpectre Command = UNIT_BUILD Object = AmericaJetSpectre TextLabel = CONTROLBAR:ConstructAmericaJetSpectre ButtonImage = C130Spectre ButtonBorderType = BUILD DescriptLabel = CONTROLBAR:ToolTipUSABuildSpectre End

1) CONTROLBAR:ConstructFactionTypeNameoftheUnit and you must provide a value for that as: Nameof&TheUnit when you place the & character it means - Highligh and make this next letter the keyboard shortcurt to initiate this unit construction: see example:

Key: CONTROLBAR:ConstructAmericaJetSpectre Value: AC130H Spectre &Gunship

2) ToolTip: This is the entrie wich explains in details what unit this is:

Key: CONTROLBAR:ToolTipUSABuildSpectre Value: Blá blá blá - whatever you says

3) the Object key - that is used when you hover your mouse over a unit in the game, it will show your username (side faction) and the value you put there.

Key: OBJECT:Spectre Value: AC130H Gunship

Final tips:

1) To insert a new key, just type Insert key in your keyboard 2) Save ofen, save save save save just click the button in the program, insert a key then SAVE 3) Allways have a working backup of generals.csf stored and also a copy of your original generals.csf 4) NEVER USE THE DELETE KEY in your keyborad 'cause the program will delete de hole key entrie no the last charcter you typed, (use BACKSPACE) to correct your mismatches - DON'T TOUCH THE DEL - 5) Allways finish your work, I mean, if you insert a new key, and don't furnish a value to it, just the name of the key - The game will crash !

Allright, go get them boys...Uncle Potato it's here if you need some help.:dance:




Unreal_General

Paintball Fury Creator

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#10 15 years ago

ok, either i suck at ,modding, im not doing something right, or you left something out. because i cant even make the humvee look like a police car even though i did everything you said.